CMA president and CEO John Wiltshire to retire

Chief diversity officer and chief of staff Sartaj Sarkaria will lead on an interim basis while an executive search is conducted.

The Canadian Marketing Association has begun its search for new leadership as John Wiltshire, president and CEO for the last five years, prepares to retire.

Wiltshire’s retirement will be effective May 2. The board has selected Sartaj Sarkaria, the CMA’s chief diversity officer and chief of staff, to act as interim chief operating officer while it works with executive search firm Boyden to find a permanent replacement for Wiltshire.

Wiltshire has been president and CEO of the CMA since 2017, when he took over the role from Doug Brooks. After starting his career on the marketing and product team at TD, he joined The Investors Group for what would end up being a 21-year career, which included a stint as its SVP of marketing.

Since joining the CMA, Wiltshire has overseen the launch of youth program CMA NXT, event series CMA Café and the Chartered Marketer professional designation program. He has also hosted the CMA Connect podcast and led the organization’s advocacy and lobbying efforts, particularly on the issue of privacy reform.

“John has made an outstanding contribution to the CMA over the past five years,” Steve Mast, president and CIO at Delvinia and chair of the CMA’s board, said in a statement. “He leaves the CMA in a strong financial position with a clear strategic plan and an impressive team of talented individuals across the organization.”